What our guests have to say about their Canalways Holiday.
Extracts selected from our Boat Logs
Our trip on the, ‘ River Dancer’ was relaxing and pleasant; hardly saw another boat, shot 350 pictures, watched peat drying, and marvelled at the sunsets. Thanks for helping this happen. “
Mike Auer Jr. USA
Most people go to Ireland on a package tour. We chose to have our own adventure on a narrow boat on the Barrow River. I t was not only a wonderful experience, it was a way to see a part of Ireland most people never take the time to see, and that is Ireland’s Inland Waterways. We met the most valuable resource among her four green fields…..and that are her warm hospitable citizens. There was Joe Moore, fourth generation Lock keeper, who met us near Monasterevin as we were loudly coming through and took the time to show my son Rory a few tips on how to do it. We met John, ‘the boxer’ at the Bridge House Bar in Athy who told us of the jam in Clancy’s pub. ( Has the title for holding the longest weekly traditional music session in Ireland ) Marion Cash whose family own Lords Island on the River! The delightful lady who checked me out at a tiny grocery store, and told me her grandfather was a barge captain. Mary, the tender at Meaney’s Bar in Leighlinbridge, whom I shared my photos with. An awesome memory for me personally is the session with Liam and Aidan ( the Weasel ) in Vicarstown, who sang Stephen Fosters song ‘Hard Times Come Again No More’ and the whole pub was alive with song. And meeting Karin, who is a secret poet as well as a barge owner, who made this journey possible… even arranging a guitar on board for me for the journey! Thanks a Lot …Marianne Murphy USA
In May 2012 we took the, ‘ James Gill ’ from Canalways and drifted along the Grand Canal and Barrow Navigation. Passing through a landscape that has hardly changed in 200 years, you are forced to switch off from the fast pace of modern life. It was the fourth time we hired a boat from Canalways and the trip gets better every time. Each of the Locks on the way is both a wonder and a challenge. There are also Lock keepers on hand if you need them they are only a phone call away. Also, by an amazing stroke of luck there are old pubs spaced at about two hour boat travel intervals along the way!
Carmel and Paddy Walshe, Newbridge, Ireland
In 1999 we took a two week trip on the Gota Canal in Sweden and in 2009 we experienced a trip on Canal a la Garonne in the South of France. Both trips were interesting but different to the trips we made on Ireland’s canals. The canal in Sweden was finished in 1822 and is a fantastic construction. Hydraulic Locks are worked by staff from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. sharp, so if you don’t pass through you will have to stay the night where you don’t want to. In France, you operate the locks yourself but just by pushing a button. There is much more traffic and for the night you have to moor in sometimes quite big harbours. So what do we prefer ? “We Love Ireland, the Grand Canal, the River Barrow and of course, the Irish”
Eric and Lilli Hoffmann, Denmark
What an amazing trip! This was our 45th Birthdays and our wives allowed us to go. We cruised from Rathangan to Tullamore, stopping at Allenwood, Edenderry, Rhode, Daingan, Tullamore and Robertstown. The highlights were:- Pubs; we loved the small towns and friends we made over a few pints, we threw darts and learned how to play 31’s. Golf at Castlebarna – We had a round of golf in 4 seasons weather, got soaked and went back to the golf clubhouse for homemade soup, and were sent on our way with a pot of soup for the road. Fishing; we caught five !
Nights in the cabin were spent playing cards and sharing stories ….The James Gill is now a part of our lives, Thank you.
Graham, Dave and Robin, Canada.
We had a lovely holiday and head back home rested, relaxed and refreshed !!
N. Quinn, NY State USA
This Canal trip lived up to our expectations. We are boaters at home and loved the ease of this trip on the Crand Canal. Ate wonderful meals on board. Loved the people we met along the way…”Ireland’s greatest asset”. Despite a few glitches we had a great time, the peat stove was a bonus and Karin always available when needed.
Dallin’s B.C. Canada.
Day One of Our Journey ” Who would have thought that Ireland would Reveal the most brilliant night sky I’ve seen in years…As I stepped outside before dawn, suffering from jet lag, I was met by a shooting star, arcing across an amazing tapestry of blackness and light, with the milky way bisecting the night sky…Lovely…with the smell of a smoldering peat fire drifting from the boats chimney the moment was complete. All this in October when we expected buckets of rain. Tomorrow we start South. Karin and Michael did their best to put us at ease with boat and lock operation. I guess I had forgotten about all those locks. ( How many are there? ) Somewhere in the back of my mind I saw us steaming off carelessly. To tell you the truth, the locks ( there are 25 of them ) while a bit intimidating are fascinating in a sort of churning waters primeval sense. The way the water fills from the upper to the lower lock, gently lowering us down and seeking it’s own level, hints at the power stored in this waterway. The boat is cosy and narrow. Kathleen and I signal each other before navigating the hall ! There is something wonderful about being awake, sitting by a little fire, while the rest of the world sleeps….” by Frank Wells USA
Cruised up to Lock 22, just north of Rathangan, a Kingfisher following us most of the way, perching quite near the boat and then flying ahead and perching again. Wow… It’s very wild and beautiful up here.
Michael and Helen Hawes, UK